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Journal Article

Climate and litter quality differently modulate the effects of soil fauna on litter decomposition across biomes

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http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons62433

Kattge,  Jens
Interdepartmental Max Planck Fellow Group Functional Biogeography, Max Planck Institute for Biogeochemistry, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Garcia-Palacios, P., Maestre, F., Kattge, J., & Wall, D. (2013). Climate and litter quality differently modulate the effects of soil fauna on litter decomposition across biomes. Ecology Letters, 16, 1045-1053. doi:10.1111/ele.12137.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-776A-6
Abstract
Climate and litter quality have been identified as major drivers of litter decomposition at large spatial scales. However, the role played by soil fauna remains largely unknown, despite its importance for litter fragmentation and microbial activity. We synthesised litterbag studies to quantify the effect sizes of soil fauna on litter decomposition rates at the global and biome scales, and to assess how climate, litter quality and soil fauna interact to determine such rates. Soil fauna consistently enhanced litter decomposition at both global and biome scales (average increment ~ 27%). However, climate and litter quality differently modulated the effects of soil fauna on decomposition rates between biomes, from climate-driven biomes to those where climate effects were mediated by changes in litter quality. Our results advocate for the inclusion of biomespecific soil fauna effects on litter decomposition as a mean to reduce the unexplained variation in largescale decomposition models.